The Federal Reserve should raise interest rates "in the coming months" if the economy picks up as expected and jobs continue to be generated, U.S. central bank chief Janet Yellen said on Friday, bolstering the case for a rate increase in June or July. "It's appropriate ... for the Fed to gradually and cautiously increase our overnight interest rate over time, and probably in the coming months such a move would be appropriate," Yellen said during an appearance at Harvard University. Although Yellen expressed caution about too steep a rise in U.S. rates, she sounded more confident than she has in the past that the U.S. economy has rebounded from a weak winter and that inflation would edge higher toward the Fed's 2 percent target.
By Rodrigo Campos NEW YORK (Reuters) - Data on inflation and employment, two of the economic indicators most important to a "data-dependent" U.S. Federal Reserve are expected next week. While Fed policymakers will be looking at those numbers as they decide whether to raise key interest rates as soon as June, traders will read through them to try and get ahead of the Fed decision. The Fed has remained constant in using economic data to decide whether to raise the Fed funds rate.
(Reuters) - Wall Street rose on Friday and capped off its strongest week since March after U.S. Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen said an interest-rate hike would likely be appropriate "in the coming months."